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FASTPAC Marines Train with MSRON 7

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS100121-28
Release Date: 1/21/2010 10:55:00 PM

By Jesse Leon Guerrero, U.S. Naval Forces, Marianas Public Affairs

SANTA RITA, GUAM (NNS) -- Sailors with Maritime Expeditionary Security Squadron (MSRON) 7 hosted a training exercise Jan. 12 in Guam for a platoon of Marines visiting from Yokosuka, Japan.

About 50 members of Fleet Antiterrorism Security Team Pacific Company (FASTPAC), Bravo 1 Platoon utilized MSRON 7's boat training simulator to get a feel for how the squadron protects high-value assets at sea.

Laser-sighted weapons, mounted aboard a boat that simulated movement with hydraulics, allowed the participants to interact with electronic targets, which appeared on the theater-sized screens around them.

Marine Corps Staff Sgt. Luis Medina, of FASTPAC, Bravo 1 Platoon, said the Navy and Marines have always had a history of teamwork.

"In order for us to conduct operations, we need to be able to work well with the Navy," said Medina. "Being a part of 7th Fleet, it's one of our taskers to be able to go where the Navy needs us to operate."

FASTPAC maintains a forward-deployed presence around the world in order to quickly respond to crises. Its duties are to detect, deter and defend against terrorist activities.

Master-at-Arms 1st Class (EXW/SW) Jesse Izdepski, a MSRON 7 Sailor who assisted with the training, said the visual aid was a good opportunity for the Marines to see how they might be able to support Navy missions.

"We operate in similar capacity often enough, and I think this is another example of how our training and mission sets are crossing paths," said Izdepski.

MSRON 7, which was commissioned in May 2004, provides rapidly deployable forces to conduct or support antiterrorism and force protection missions. It promotes the maritime strategy by providing security for American citizens, through the application of sea power, and by strengthening partnerships with allied nations.

"It's all of a maritime sense," Izdepski said regarding the training. "We're looking at the preplanned responses that they would take if any number of specific events were to occur [and] how they would respond, using the lowest amount of force possible."

Marine Corps Lance Cpl. John Biondo, of FASTPAC, Bravo 1 Platoon, said he had never trained with a laser shot simulator before, but he could see the importance of what they were learning.

Biondo and the other Marines took turns manning the "machine guns," waiting to see if the animated vessels were hostile as they approached.

"It's pretty specific to our job," said Biondo. "We might find ourselves in that position in the future."

During their two-week visit to Guam, FASTPAC also trained with Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit 5, Naval Special Warfare Unit 1 and Naval Mobile Construction Battalion 1.

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